Since stress is a function and natural consequence of being alive, what can you do to reduce or minimize its negative effects upon you? Here are 10 things you can do to keep your stress in check which will improve the quality of your life by reducing your pain, your stress, your anxiety, your fears, your grief, your worries, your frustrations, your anger, and perhaps any rage you might harbor when you put these techniques to work.
When you use any or all of these 10 techniques you may find that many of your previous aches and pains have faded away, that you have more patience with yourself and others, and most importantly, by engaging in self care, you’ll automatically increase your productivity, ability to be more compassionate with others as well as providing a boost to your own self image and self esteem.
Also, should you consider using these techniques on a regular basis, be prepared for being asked “So, what’s your secret? You look so much younger and are so much more relaxed than the last time I saw you? Come on, what are you doing….Inquiring minds would like to know ???”
Relaxing music can sooth your “savage” beast and change your state from one of high anxiety to a state where you are relaxed and calm. Research shows that since ancient times, certain types of music have the ability to calm your nerves and cause you to feel relaxed and at ease.
Listening to soothing sounds has the ability to reduce your pain, your anxieties, your fears, and your stresses. The best part is that with music, you do not have to “do” anything except listen—in order to receive the healing benefits. In fact, the rule which applies here is “less effort” yields greater results!
Your sense of smell is powerful and it has the power to easily change your mood. If you have a normal olfactory capacity—sense of smell— this means that you can easily distinguish between “good” and “bad” odors or smells. Smells that you like have the ability to lift or elevate your mood. This includes fragrances that can increase your energy or calm your nerves.
On the other hand, “bad” smells set off alarm bells in your brain’s amygdala—the part of you which ignites your brain’s fear response system to perceived threats. Setting of your amgydala’s fear alert alarm can change your mood for the worse by activating your “fight or flight” mechanism or it can save your life by alerting you to potential danger so that you can flee or run.
The healing art of Aromatherapy has been used since ancient times to provide relief from pain and stress. Aromatherapy has the ability to effortlessly dissolve away your aches and pains, your anxieties, and your fears by activating and captivating elements of your olfactory system (smell) which tie directly into the “pleasure pathways” of your brain’s limbic system.
Your brain’s limbic system has the ability to generate many beneficial neurochemicals such as beta-endorphins. Most likely you are familiar with the term “Runner’s High.” Well, such a “high” is produced by your limbic system and this aspect is sometimes referred to as the “pleasure pathways” (of you mind).
In plain language this simply means you’ll feel good! Or even better since a spike in your pleasure causing limbic system neurochemicals can result in states of ecstasy, euphoria or even mild delirium—drooling! The aromatherapy fragrances such as jasmine or lavender have the capacity to sooth your “savage” beast. And it all happens effortlessly on your part since your sense of smell operates automatically!
And, the more you like a particular fragrance of oil, the BETTER you’ll feel and enjoy the experience. The best part is that since your smell memory is particularly acute, you can actually learn to recreate those same pleasurable feelings just by clearly recalling the feeling state you had when you first experienced the favorable odor.
The simple act of applying (oils) or inhaling Aromatherapy fragrances such as lavender and jasmine have the effect of immediately lifting your mood. Recent research shows that jasmine or lavender have the ability to calm you down as well as assist you in getting a restful night’s sleep. Using either of these fragrances right before bedtime and during sleep have been shown to improve the quality of your sleep so that you awaken rested and refreshed. Studies also show that regularly using jasmine or lavender before bedtime or while sleeping improves your ability to be more alert the following day.
An added benefit of using aromatic fragrances is that they may make you more attractive to the opposite sex since they contain pheromones that the opposite sex may find pleasing. Aromatic fragrances tend to have effects on behavior below the level of conscious awareness, so should you decide to use them, you should be prepared for “unexpected” positive responses from others as they unconsciously feel better about you and the pheromones you are emitting. Hopefully, this will translate into better levels of rapport with others and fewer interpersonal conflicts.
Take a Vacation
When you take time off for a vacation, you give your mind and body a “break” from your everyday routines as well as providing yourself with an opportunity to rest and recharge mind, body, and spirit. Research indicates that people who do not take vacations have more health problems than those that do take them. Also, if you are one of those who regularly skips taking vacations, you may be at increased risk to die at an earlier age including significantly increasing your chance of having a heart attack.
Although you may already be aware of the insidious and harmful impacts negative stress can have on your health, you may still be reluctant to take a vacation since you may view taking a vacation as a sign of weakness or not taking a vacation as a badge of honor. Or, you may be employed in a “hostile” work environment where those who take vacations are passed over for promotions or in some way not deemed to be “team” players.
Taking a vacation can serve as a major antidote for relieving and removing the effects of stress and excessive levels of anxiety from your nervous system. A recent study which compared women who vacationed at least twice per year to woman who only took a vacation once every six years or less, found that women who did not vacation every year were almost eight times more likely to have a heart attack or develop coronary heart disease. Another research study concluded that men at high risk for coronary heart disease who did not take annual vacations were 32% more likely to die from a heart attack.
Many Americans appear to be obsessed with work. Culturally, in many quarters, not being obsessive about working or not always being engaged in some goal oriented activity may be looked upon negatively, as if you are automatically “lazy” or are a “loafer” for not wanting to continuously work until you are in a state of frenzied exhaustion.
Why should you feel “guilty” about not wanting to live like a caged hamster running on a constantly turning wheel? How much fun can that be? When you begin to consider the potential and actual health benefits of taking a vacation: you can catch up on your sleep and eliminate your accumulated sleep deficit; you can let go of stress and anxiety with a change in routine and scenery; you can improve your productivity by taking time out to “pause” such that your conscious and subconscious minds are able to work together harmoniously.
Thus taking a vacation break can often result in new levels of insight and awareness. It also means that some problem you have been working on or thinking about may “solve itself” once we are able to relax and let our minds roam free of daily routine. Most importantly, with this kind of stress anxiety reduction experience from taking a vacation you may find that your creativity and problem solving abilities have improved in more ways than one including possibly improving the clarity of your thought processes so you’ll be able to think more clearly and get better outcomes!
For example, you may be unhappy with your job situation but fearful of changing jobs due to the economic climate, however, during a vacation you may meet someone who gives you a new lead on a job opportunity or on a career move you may have never considered or thought was out of reach.
On the other hand, let’s say you’ve been unhappy for some time with your living situation—you have roommates who are not “pulling their weight”—and by taking a vacation, you now have time to reflect upon what you really want from your living situation but were previously afraid to voice to others. Because of the quiet reflective time you had available during your vacation, you may return home empowered: announcing that you will no longer be a doormat for others—that you are either moving out or your roommates will have to either improve their behaviors or else.
In cases such as these, taking a vacation created the space which allowed you to become reflective so that you could go inside and figure out exactly what you wanted from your current living situation. Reducing your stress, anxieties, and associated fears in a relaxed setting which a vacation provides places you in a position of increased choice: you can act or not act; you can change things or let things remain the same—all while being simultaneously relaxed and unpressured.
The real question you may be faced with is this: Are you addicted to drama or making excuses and the adrenaline rush which can sometimes come from living in a state of high anxiety, fear or worry? If your answer is no, then you would be wise to consider incorporating regular vacations into your lifestyle. This change will enhance the quality of your life and as recent research shows, most likely increase your longevity too. Or, as Star Trek’s Commander Spock might say, it will increase your potential to “Live long and prosper!”
Tuning Fork Healing
A novel way to reduce your pain and get immediate stress relief is to use tuning forks which boost your own natural nitric oxide levels. You may already be familiar with the powerful effects of nitric oxide since it is the active signaling molecule which allows male impotence medications such as Viagra, Ciallis and Levitra to work so that men can achieve and sustain an erection.
But what if you could achieve similar powerful effects for dissolving your pain, stress, grief, and anxiety naturally without drugs or medication of any kind? Fortunately, there are several ways you can use tuning forks to do just that!
You may already be familiar with tuning forks used to tune instruments such as a piano. Tuning forks can also be used to tune the human instrument—your body! Below is a description of various types of tuning forks you can use to boost your own natural nitric oxide rhythm.
Basically, when your natural nitric oxide rhythm is functioning properly, generally you are not experiencing any pain or stress. However, when your nitric oxide cycle is “flatlined”, you typically will experience pain or stress.
The natural flow of your nitric oxide rhythm is known as “spiking” or “puffing”. The cycle is a wave that spikes and is approximately 6 minutes in length. The nitric oxide wave has healing benefits since it affects almost every organ, blood vessel, and all aspects of your vasculature and muscles.
Nitric oxide spiking also can boost your immune system response—helping your body to fight off disease and illness. By using any of the tuning forks from the StressFreeNow website, you can choose to boost your natural nitric oxide rhythm by either hearing or feeling the sound vibrations. The effects are immediate and once you experience the amazing levels of stress and pain relief tuning forks offer, you’ll wonder why it has taken you so long to find something so simple that works!
Educating yourself about the positive health benefits and pain relief tuning forks can provide is a first step for increasing your overall well-being. Take a look at the various types of tuning forks on the StressFreeNow website in order to get a sense of which ones might suit your needs. Research shows that all of them spike nitric oxide. Check them out—you’ll be glad that you did!